Short reviews of comedy old and new, and other bits of info which don’t fit anywhere else on the site, updated weekly.
What We Do In The Shadows Season 2 Episode 6
The first season of this show was a little uneven quality wise but due to being a big fan of the film I’m ridiculously pleased to see how much it’s improved over the course of it’s second year, and episode 5 was the best yet as Colin Robertson became aware of previously undiscovered powers and threatened the lives of all of our lead characters. Episode 6 was almost as good though as Mark Hamill’s Jim The Vampire turned up on the scene to challenge Laszlo to a duel as 167 years ago he’d skipped out on a hotel bill. Being a coward Laszlo fucks off and the episode largely becomes a Matt Berry-centric one, and one which really gave Berry the chance to shine as he set himself up as Jackie Daytona in Pennsylvania, murdering the local bar owner and taking it over, and then discovering a passion for volleyball. It’s all daft stuff undoubtedly but extremely funny at the same time, the role lets Berry ham it up deliciously, and it came to an end with a superb bit of physical comedy with Berry and Hamill duking it out delightfully. It probably won’t happen but it leaves it open for Hamill to return too which I hope might occur one day, with the same applying to Jackie Daytona as well.
JJ Villard’s Fairy Tales Season 1 Episode 1
A couple of years ago JJ Villard made a pilot for Adult Swim called Trap Universe where an insane half eaten apple core tormented the lives of his employees, forcing them to work for him against their will in a show which was packed with satire of many a shitty corporation while also containing a lot of extreme violence and over the top gore, a hint of sexual perversion, and a slither of absurd silliness too. Unfortunately it wasn’t given a series but it gave me high hopes that this new Adult Swim show would be as fun, but alas it’s not to be. Fairy tales have been the subject of many an adult retelling over the years and it’s an idea which is rather tired now, so to make it actually funny you really need to do something fresh and original with it, but that’s not the case here at all as it takes the concept of Rapunzel and just throws in a lot of violence and attempts at shock humour that feel bland in the extreme. The animation is pretty damn ugly too, and though that might be intentional at times it doesn’t make watching the show any more appealing, and even the characters you’re supposed to like were pretty irritating. Perhaps it will improve as the series continues and due to my fondness for Trap Universe I will give it another shot, but I’m not optimistic that it’ll get any better given how weak this opening episode was.
Down The Line
Gary Bellamy is back after far too long away with a lockdown special, and boy have I missed him as it’s one of the few Radio 4 comedy shows which has been reliably funny each and every time (and the Halloween special is especially amazing). If you’re not in the know this is a fake radio call in show hosted by Rhys Thomas and the callers are nearly always gloriously odd, and it’s all the better for it. This latest one off (or technically a two-off, as another episode is available on the Radio 4 site but wasn’t broadcast on the station) sees Gary optimistically hope he can talk about something other than the Coronavirus but that was never going to happen, but at least the majority of the calls are entertaining and amusing, from a woman who’s not coping simply because there’s been far too much lockdown based poetry, to some mockery of the houses of the famous that we’ve seen on our screens, while a supposed famous actor talks about being a homosexual smack addict and how “The NHS front line workers are the second bravest people in the country after actors”. There’s the odd misfire like a distressed call complaining about her father (who had just called in himself) and a conspiracy theorist is a bit annoying (though he has one good line about a politician not replying to his faxes), but the majority of it really strong, with a weird call from a Professor Dokter (who planned to wipe out mankind and repopulate it with his own children, but self isolation has meant his scheme is completely up the creek) and one from a very angry ex-Prisoner being the ones which made me laugh the most.
This is a fairly quirky 2008 effort from Disney which didn’t exactly set the world on fire, but if it had been released a few years later it might have been a much bigger success as it’s about a dog who thinks he has super powers as he plays one on a tv show. But when he gets separated from his owner he eventually discovers the truth – and what it’s like to be a real dog! It’s an enjoyable flick, full of big set pieces and wacky adventures, and while there are a couple of moments where it doesn’t quite work, and it’s nowhere near Disney’s best, it’s a very pleasant way to spend a quiet weekday evening.
Video(s) Of The Week
Jack Dixon’s produced two great videos relating to the pandemic, a fake quiz show called What Day Of The Week It Is, and one which sees him trying to stay safe, they’re simple concepts but pulled off extremely well and both made me laugh a fair bit as Dixon has strong comic chops and they’re effectively shot and edited too. https://youtu.be/gO-4SlyMDos / https://youtu.be/XwJ_Rejd3zk
Link Of The Week:
Tom Binns is trying to raise five grand so that he can start a “Drive In Comedy Club”, with the majority of the money going on a complicated sound system. It’s a nice idea for sure, and if anyone’s interested more info is here –
Previous Comedy Snippets:
10/05/2020 – The Toxic Avenger The Musical, Kinky Boots, The Simpsons, Wrong
03/05/2020 – Crank Yankers, Code 404, Upload, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
26/04/2020 – Oh Hello On Broadway, Emily Heller – Ice Thickeners, Sam Morril – I Got This, Were The World Mine
19/04/2020 – American Dad, Maeve In America Essays By A Girl From Somewhere Else by Maeve Higgins, Quiz, Simple Men
12/04/2020 – Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, Dave, Broke, Bran Nue Dae
05/04/2020 – Super Buddies, Awkwafina Is Nora From Queens, Future Man, The Magicians
29/03/2020 – Kate & Koji, The Unicorn, Miracle Workers: Dark Ages, The Suicide Shop
22/03/2020 – Eugenius The Musical, Cake, Modern Family, Avalanche Sharks
15/03/2020 – It’s Personal With Amy Hoggart, Mike Tyson Mysteries, The Simpsons, The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists
08/03/2020 – The Windsors, Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Theatre Podcast, Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet, The Big Sick
01/03/2020 – Everything’s Going To Be Okay, High Fidelity, Duncanville, His Girl Friday
23/02/2020 – Outmatched, The Secret Diaries Of Alan Bennett, Avenue 5, Hot To Trot
16/02/2020 – Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Indebted, Sex Education, Turn Me On, Dammit!
09/02/2020 – Joe Pera Talks With You, Miracle Workers: Dark Ages, Bless The Harts, A Boy And His Dog
02/02/2020 – Sex Education, Avenue 5, Digger, Premature
26/01/2020 – Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Goes Wrong Show, Mum, Not Quite Hollywood: The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation!
19/01/2020 – You’re The Worst, The Skewer, Kongen Befaler, Sisters
12/01/2020 – John Mulaney And The Sack Lunch Bunch, Sex Education, Derry Girls, Frozen II
05/01/2020 – Look Who’s Back by Timur Vermes, How To Produce Comedy Bronze by Jon Plowman, The Rocky Horror Picture Show Comic, The Rutles – All You Need Is Cash
29/12/2019 – Mrs Fletcher, Harley Quinn, What A Fucking Year On Tv With Mel B and Mel B, Cafe Society
22/12/2019 – Content, Ladhood, Silicon Valley Ten Years Later The Extended Documentary, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
15/12/2019 – Astronomy Club The Sketch Show, South Park, Joe Pera Talks With You, Lavalantula
08/12/2019 – Mom, Mock The Week, Sunnyside, The Ten
01/12/2019 – Vic and Bob’s Big Night Out, Kongen Befaler (aka Taskmaster Norway), Harry Hill’s Clubnite, Scout’s Guide To The Apocalypse
24/11/2019 – Wellington Paranormal, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Tourist Trap, The Adventures Of Rocky and Bullwinkle
17/11/2019 – 2100: A Space Novelty, Silicon Valley, Zomboat, On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
10/11/2019 – Do You Want To See A Dead Body?, Taskmaster, The Good Place, A Shaun The Sheep Movie: Farmageddon
03/11/2019 – Bojack Horseman, Comedians Giving Lectures, Living With Yourself, A Town Called Panic
27/10/2019 – Joe Pera Talks With You, Would I Lie To You?, The Band Wagon, Tucker and Dale Vs Evil
20/10/2019 – Star Trek Discovery Short Treks, Zomboat, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, High Society
13/10/2019 – Perfect Harmony, Family Guy, Afternoon Delight, The Death Of Dick Long
06/10/2019 – Bless The Harts, South Park, Stath Lets Flats, She’s Out Of My League
29/09/2019 – Danny’s House, Hot Date, Idiotsitter, Crimewave
22/09/2019 – Alternatino with Arturo Castro, The Good Place The Selection, American Dad, American Reunion
15/09/2019 – Off The Air, Taskmaster, Elvira Mistress Of The Dark Issues 1 – 3, Smiley Face
08/09/2019 – Amusical, The Mind Of Herbert Clunkerdunk, Fleabag, Digby The Biggest Dog In The World
01/09/2019 – Final Space. On Becoming A God In Central Florida, In Fabric, Archie’s Final Project
25/08/2019 – A Black Lady Sketch Show, Bajillion Dollar Properties, The Righteous Gemstones, A Good Old Fashioned Orgy
18/08/2019 – Sherman’s Showcase, Succession, Hesher, God Bless America
11/08/2019 – The Day Shall Come, Preacher, Archie Vs Predator II, Juan Of The Dead
04/08/2019 – Mike Tyson Mysteries, The Boys, Los Espookys, Hamlet 2
28/07/2019 – Lodge 49, Fortysomething, Mutafukaz, Brazil
21/07/2019 – Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, Neighbors From Hell, Live At The BBC – Desiree Burch, Robot and Frank
14/07/2019 – Another Period, Suzi Ruffell – Dance Like Everyone’s Watching, The Mark Thomas Comedy Product, Observe And Report
07/07/2019 – Bridget and Eamon, Action Team, Everything Sucks, Sisters.
30/06/2019 – Taskmaster, Year Of The Rabbit, Santa Versus Dracula, Poultrygeist – Night of the Chicken Dead
23/06/2019 – The Unauthorised Bash Brothers Experience, Trigger Warning With Killer Mike, Taskmaster Sweden, City Lights
16/06/2019 – Rick and Morty Issue 50, Spiderman / Deadpool Issue 50, Lobo Goes To Hollywood, Superhero Movie
08/06/2019 – Archer, The Jellies, Mom, Bye Bye Birdie.
01/06/2019 – Rostered On, Historical Roasts, American Dad, The Phantom Of The Paradise
23/05/2019 – Barry, Urban Myths, Goatface, Shazam!
18/05/2019 – Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Taskmaster, Documentary Now, The History Of Future Folk
10/05/2019 – Dead Pixels, Santa Clarita Diet, Scot Squad, Lemon
03/05/2019 – What We Do In The Shadows, Lazor Wulf, Al Murray’s Great British Pub Quiz, Brigsby Bear
26/04/2019 – Barry, Bonding, Special, Repo The Genetic Opera
19/04/2019 – Hot Streets, Lazor Wulf, Tacoma FD, The Tick, Safety Last
12/04/2019 – The Unexplainers, The Tick, The Funny Women Awards 2019, Popstars Never Stop Popping
04/04/2019 – Santa Clarita Diet, Abby’s, This Time With Alan Partridge, Abbot & Costello Meet Frankenstein
28/03/2019 – Wayne, Blockbusters, Bill And Ted Face The Music, Hoodwinked
21/03/2019 – Shrill, A.P. Bio, One Red Nose Day And A Wedding, PK
14/03/2019 – Corporate, The Harry Hill Movie, CJ7, The Day Will Come
07/03/2019 – This Time With Alan Partridge, Frank Skinner On Demand, Girlfriend’s Day, Comic Relief
28/02/2019 – Hot Streets, Warren, Mom, Stage Fright
21/02/2019 – Jon Glaser Loves Gear, Corporate, Doom Patrol, Nudist Colony Of The Dead
14/02/2019 – American Dad, Pen15, Afterlife, The Return Of Captain Invincible
07/02/2019 – The Other Two, Hannah Gadsby’s Douglas, Roast Battle, Guys And Dolls
31/01/2019 – Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Tigtone, Angie Tribeca, Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life, Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Podcast
24/01/2019 – Oh Lucy!, Blark And Son, Angie Tribeca
17/01/2019 – The Day Shall Come, Family Guy, Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Podcast, Jon Glaser Loves Gear
10/01/2018- Best Week Ever With Paul F. Tompkins, Vice, Catastrophe, Angie Tribeca